Marine Industry ‘hasn’t got it’s act together’ over fibreglass

by | Jul 22, 2019

One of the UK’s biggest boat builders states that the marine industry hasn’t got its act together when it comes to recycling fibreglass.

During the 1960’s the marine industry was revolutionised when using fibreglass was introduced as a more efficient and cost-effective way of building boats. However, with this has come some negative impacts caused by the material. There are fears that using fibreglass has some detrimental effects on the environment as it can’t be recycled easily, there are also fears over health concerns that occur when you do try to break it down.

“The industry has not got its act together yet”, “The boats that we first started maybe 50 years ago, they were fairly overbuilt. The industry’s getting better, more precise, producing better weight control, but what to do with the very strongly built boats of 50 years ago, we haven’t yet got a solution”.

– David Tydeman, Fairline Yachts

Fairline Yachts, based in Oundle in Northamptonshire has been using fibreglass to build boats since the 60’s, the company participated in a recent interview with ITV. David Tydeman said “The industry has not got its act together yet. The boats that we first started maybe 50 years ago, they were fairly overbuilt.

“The industry’s getting better, more precise, producing better weight control, but what to do with the very strongly built boats of 50 years ago, we haven’t yet got a solution.”

Fairline Luxury Yacht – (Fairline Website)

Richardson’s are the largest operator on the Broads. Greg Munford said more research was needed into new types of fibreglass. He went on to say: “I’m sure there’s going to be technological developments that allow some form of fibre reinforced boats.”

During the ITV interview, there was also a statement from Sandy Martin, the MP for Ipswich, and the Shadow Minister for Waste Management. He stated that the main issue was what to do with unwanted fibreglass and re-iterated it as an issue that must be addressed. He also mentioned that it’s an issue for the wind farm industry too.

View full video interview here.

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